Skip to Content

Cardinal Bechara Boutros Rai, Marine Le Pen; Le Pen refusing the veil

Le Pen refuses headscarf for meeting with Grand Mufti

Marine Le Pen refused to wear a headscarf for a meeting with the Grand Mufti in Beirut, which led to praise on social media from Christians.

Published: February 22, 2017, 9:00 am

    Read more

    The proposed meeting with the Grand Mufti, the most prominent Sunni Muslim cleric in the country, had to be scrapped at the last minute.

    Le Pen was scheduled to meet Sheikh Abdellatif Deriane, the Grand Mufti of Lebanon, in his office in the capital on Tuesday. The Grand Mufti’s press office said that Le Pen had been informed beforehand of their requirement to appear with her head covered, Reuters reported.

    Upon her arrival, Le Pen was again asked to wear a headscarf. According to AFP, Le Pen was given the veil to cover her hair by the Mufti’s aides.

    But she refused, as she is not a Muslim. “You can pass on my respects to the Grand Mufti, but I will not cover myself up,” Le Pen responded. She then cancelled the encounter.

    She explained that during a meeting with Egypt’s Ahmed el-Tayeb, the Grand Imam of al-Azhar, a prestigious Sunni title, in 2015, it was not required to wear a headscarf. “I met the Grand Mufti of Al-Azhar,” she told reporters. “The highest Sunni authority didn’t have this requirement, but it doesn’t matter.”

    She received praise for her decision on social media: “Well done! You shouldn’t mix politics and religion,” one person wrote on Twitter, as headscarves and other conspicuous religious symbols have been banned from French schools since 2004.

    Another said: “There are those who speak about women’s rights and there are those who actually defend them. Marine Le Pen,” another person wrote.

    The FN leader has been outspoken in her opposition to the Muslim headscarf and has stated that she would ban such religious symbols in public places.

    An aid to the Mufti expressed his dissatisfaction to CNN: “I personally greeted her at the door of the Edict House and wanted to hand her a white headscarf that was in my hand, she refused to take it,” Khaldoun Awas explained.

    “I urged her to put it on, she refused and said she would not put it on and walked out without attending the previously agreed upon meeting with the Mufti. The Edict House regrets such inappropriate behavior at such meetings.”

    Earlier, after talks with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Le Pen spoke out against French policy on Syria and told reporters that president Assad was the only choice as leader of the country.

    She flew to the Middle East as French police were ransacking her party headquarters as part of an “investigation into fake jobs”.

    Allegations that parliamentary assistants got fake jobs paid for out of EU funds, are purely political Le Pen says. The party’s vice-president Florian Philippot too dismissed the searches as a media stunt to influence the outcome of the election.

    He said: ”These are media-stunt searches on the day when Le Pen gets a two-point bounce in the polls. It’s always when the system is in panic that these so-called affairs come out.”

    Philippot also tweeted: “In Lebanon, Marine refuses to wear the veil. A beautiful message of freedom and emancipation sent to women in France and the world!”

    Opinion polls predict Le Pen, fierce critic of the European Union, is likely to get the highest score in the first round of voting.

    The French presidential candidate was in Lebanon as part of her election campaign ahead of the first round of voting in April. Le Pen, leader of the national-conservative political party and one of its main political forces, is leading the pack at this stage.

    Consider donating to support our work

    Help us to produce more articles like this. FreeWestMedia is depending on donations from our readers to keep going. With your help, we expose the mainstream fake news agenda.

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Middle East

    The death blow against terrorism in Libya

    TripoliGeneral Khalifa Haftar's Libyan National Army (LNA) has finally eliminated Libya's Ansar al-Sharia terrorists affiliated with Al-Qaida.

    Terrorist-supported GNA breaks ceasefire in Libya

    On March 9, the spokesperson for the Libyan National Army (LNA) Command, General Ahmad Mismari, said that the Government of National Accord (GNA) forces had launched a large-scale offensive against LNA positions. Arab media have also confirmed this information.

    Anti-Turkish ‘Stop Terror’ rally held in Benghazi

    BenghaziLibyan people are protesting against the neo-Ottoman ambitions of Turkish president Erdogan.

    Al-Qaeda on the threshold of Europe

    KhartoumA Free West Media exclusive: How Sudan and Turkey transferred terrorists to Libya.

    Mass protest against US presence rocks Baghdad

    BaghdadThe Iraqi capital city of Baghdad was rocked by mass protests on Friday, as hundreds of thousands of demonstrators marched against the presence of American troops in the country.

    Manipulated OPCW report on Douma exposed in UNSC testimony

    New YorkOn November 23, WikiLeaks published information from an OPCW employee, a member of its fact finding mission to Douma, Syria, expressing “his gravest concern over intentional bias introduced to a redacted version of the report he co-authored”.

    Trump could face ‘strong’ war-crimes case over Soleimani’s murder

    Iran has indicated that it will pursue war-crimes charges against President Donald Trump at the International Criminal Court in the Hague over this month's assassination of General Qassem Soleimani.

    US lured Soleimani into Irak ‘to discuss peace’ — regional media

    On January 3, the United States killed Iran's most important commander, Qassem Soleimani. According to Kuwaiti media, which cite Iraq's prime minister as a source, Soleimani was invited by the prime minister at the request of the United States to mediate with Iran. When Soleimani left Baghdad's airport, he was bombed by a US drone along with the entire receiving Iraqi delegation. The United States then announced that it would stop fighting the Islamic State and focus instead on the forces with which it had been allied in the fight against IS. Iraq's parliament has voted to expel the US from Iraq, something the US refuses to obey.

    Christians in Syria mourn the death of Iranian general

    AleppoThe US "maximum pressure" campaign against Iran has surprised at least one blogger, an American analyst who is knowledgeable about the Middle East and speaks Arabic fluently.

    Iraqi parliament votes to eject all foreign troops from its soil

    Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi has publicly declared that he can no longer guarantee the security of foreign troops on Iraqi soil. It is therefore likely that foreign troops will leave soon.

    Go to archive